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FBI asks public to help identify those who 'instigated violence' on Capitol Hill

District of Columbia police have also asked the public for help.

Updated: January 7, 2021 - 3:49pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Federal law enforcement is asking the public to help identify people who "actively instigated violence" Wednesday in the nation’s capital, which includes demonstrators breaching the U.S. Capitol Building. 

"The FBI is accepting tips and digital media depicting rioting and violence in the U.S. Capitol Building and surrounding area in Washington, D.C., on January 6, 2021," the agency said in its public release Wednesday evening.

FBI teams rushed to Capitol Hill on Wednesday afternoon as the chaos escalated and amid images of demonstrators smashing windows and wandering through Statuary Hall. 

"If you have witnessed unlawful violent actions, we urge you to submit any information, photos, or videos that could be relevant at fbi.gov/USCapitol," the release also requests.

Such FBI requests are not unusual. The agency as recently as Dec. 26 asked for information from the public about the explosion in downtown Nashville, Tenn. 

However, law enforcement appears to be making an especially assertive effort to find those who breached the Capitol Building, caused damage and hurt police officers, including one Metro Police Department officer, whom officials said Thursday remains hospitalized. 

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced Thursday that the district has launched a similar effort to identify those who broke the law or allegedly broke the law.